Clinical Practice Guidelines and Dental Evidence

Our collection of evidence-based clinical practice guidelines, systematic reviews, and primary studies that will help you improve your practice.

Clinical practice guidelines

The strongest resources to aid dental professionals in clinical decision-making. Developed by an expert panel, clinical practice guidelines critically appraise, summarize, and interpret recent and relevant clinical evidence to provide recommendations that can be applied to patient care. Explore current clinical practice guidelines below.

Antibiotics for dental pain and swelling

The latest recommendations for antibiotic usage in the urgent management of pulpal- and periapical-related dental pain and intra-oral swelling.

Clinical practice guideline provides recommendations for addressing dental pain and swelling.

Antibiotics to prevent infective endocarditis

Recommendations from the American Heart Association on the use of antibiotics to prevent infective endocarditis.

Antibiotics to prevent prosthetic joint infection

Recommendations for the use of antibiotic prophylaxis to prevent orthopaedic implant infection in dental patients.

Caries management

Series of guidelines with recommendations for each stage of the caries disease process including prevention, detection, and treatment.

Fluoride toothpaste for young children

Updated guideline recommending a unified message to the general public regarding fluoride toothpaste usage for children under six years of age.

Non-fluoride Caries Preventive Agents

Clinical recommendations for the use of agents such as sucrose-free polyol chewing gums, xylitol dentifrices, and chlorhexidine in preventing caries.

Oral cancer detection

Current recommendations for evaluating lesions, including potentially malignant disorders, in the oral cavity of patients.

Pain management

Recommendations for managing acute dental pain, including the use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and opioids.

Periodontitis treatment

ADA panel recommendations for nonsurgical treatment of chronic periodontitis by means of scaling and root planing with or without adjuncts.

Sealants for caries prevention

Expert panel recommendations for the use of pit-and-fissure sealants to prevent caries.

Topical fluoride for caries prevention

ADA panel recommendations for various topical fluoride agents for caries prevention, including mouth rinses, varnishes, gels, foams and pastes.

Systematic reviews

Like clinical practice guidelines, systematic reviews critically appraise and summarize the scientific literature in regards to a specific clinical question. Unlike guidelines, which then use the literature to make clinical recommendations, systematic reviews leave the job of interpreting their results up to the discretion of dental practitioners. Explore our collection of current systematic reviews below.

Analgesics for dental pain

Summarizing the benefits and harms of analgesic agents for dental pain management.

Clinical evidence for the use of dental painkillers.

Capnography during sedation

Summarizing the benefits and harms of capnography during procedures involving moderate sedation.

Dental care before cardiac valve surgery

Determining the potential effect of dental treatment before cardiac valve surgery or left ventricular assist device implantation.

Human papillomavirus vaccine

Analyzing HPV vaccine effectiveness against vaccine-type HPV infection and HPV-associated cellular changes.

Primary studies

The ADA provides relevant research data that you can use for clinical decision making. Explore the most recent and trending topics below.

COVID-19 prevalence among dentists

Survey finds dentists continue to have a lower COVID-19 infection rate than other front-line health professionals.

COVID-19 prevalence among dental hygienists

Survey finds COVID-19 infection rate among dental hygienists is 3.1%, which aligns with the cumulative infection prevalence rate among dentists.

Electronic cigarettes

Commentary supports the ban of vaping products and calls for additional research.


Want to learn how to incorporate the latest scientific evidence into clinical practice? Check out these educational opportunities offered by the ADA Science and Research Institute.

Systematic review workshop

This hands-on workshop provides insight into the entire process of writing a systematic review – and includes instruction from the editor of JADA.

A photograph of a person’s hands typing on a laptop computer.

Dentistry for the Modern Age

For dentists and educators, this workshop explains how to both practice and teach evidence-based dentistry.

Book on evidence-based dentistry

Learn how both dental teams and educators can harness the power of the latest scientific information and apply it to patient care.

How-to videos

Explore various instructional videos that help illustrate certain evidence-based dentistry techniques and clinical procedures.